Board Election

Participation on the ONA Board of Directors is a unique opportunity for digital professionals to guide the world’s largest organization of digital journalists in shaping the future of media and building a stronger industry. Board participation is a chance to grow personally and professionally, and to develop skills, experience and connections with a team of other passionate and motivated professionals.

There are a total of 16 seats on the ONA Board; one is an appointed, non-voting student representative. Eight members are in the middle of their terms and not up for re-election. The other eight directors are at the end of their two-year terms or appointments. There are two seats appointed by the board this year and six open seats for the current election.

Election process

The 2021-22 ONA Board election will be open Oct. 20-30, 2020. ONA members as of Oct. 16 are eligible to cast ballots.

  1. Study up on the candidate slate, which was announced on Oct. 7.
    See the Candidates
  2. Get registered to vote no later than Oct. 16 by making sure your ONA membership is active or join ONA if you are not already a member.
    Check Your Membership
  3. Starting Oct. 20, log into the ONA member portal and find your unique election passcode on your home page.
    Get your passcode
  4. By Oct. 30, visit the ONA eBallot system and log in using your passcode to claim your ballot and vote!

In 2019, the ONA Board of Directors appointed one non-voting Student Representative to the Board for a two-year term which started on Jan. 1, 2020. More details about the selection of the student representative can be found here.

Full timeline of process

From nominations to final results, the election process lasts approximately three months. Note that some dates are subject to change:

Sept. 9, 2020: Board nominations opened
Sept. 23, 2020: Board nominations closed
Oct. 7, 2020: Board slate announced
Oct. 16, 2020: Voter registration deadline. ONA members as of this date are eligible to vote in the election
Oct. 20, 2020: Board voting will open
Oct. 21, 2020: Board Forum
Oct. 30, 2020: Board voting closes
Nov. 2, 2020: Winners notified
Nov. 5, 2020: Winners will be announced
Jan. 1, 2021: New terms begin

How to run for the board

Two forms must be submitted to complete candidacy for the ONA Board. The 2021-22 board nominations opened on September 9, 2020.

  1. Ensure you’re a member of ONA in good standing. Confirm your membership status or renew your membership or join ONA here.
    Check Your Membership
  2. Review the nominee criteria and responsibilities required of board members, and have an understanding of ONA’s mission.
    Read Responsibilities
  3. Ask another ONA member to nominate you using the nomination form.
    Examine Nomination Form
  4. Complete the candidate form.
    Submit Candidacy

Note: Current members of the Board of Directors running for reelection are required to complete the candidate form only

Nominations review process

The Governance Committee, led by a former or current board member, will screen candidates and present a slate of eligible candidates to the current board for its approval. It is the responsibility of the Governance Committee to present a slate that reflects a diversity of interests in the make-up of the board. The committee will recommend candidates who have thoughtfully and thoroughly answered questions in the candidate form and most closely align with the criteria for board membership.

Once the slate has been reviewed, the nominees will be notified by the Governance Committee Chair and announced to the ONA membership. A page listing nominees will be posted on, along with their photos, bios, stated qualifications and statement submitted during the nomination process.

Nominees will be given two weeks to reach out to ONA members via social media or other communications platforms. They are welcome to include any relevant links for posting with their candidate profile on

Previous elections